It’s Summer!! And many of us have kids or grandkids or other kids or somebody else’s kids and they are starting to get bored and spend a lot of time on video games or on social media. So this security update is dedicated to kid safety. Many thinks to our cyber division friends in several government agencies for helping with this.
So here’s a post that’s going to be very popular with parents, but might irritate some of the kids. As parents, guardians, and gatekeepers, it is our job to keep kids safe online, and the only way to do that is to monitor what they’re doing, and not allow them to download apps.
Here’s an analogy for you: when you teach your child to swim, do you just throw him/her in the deep end of the pool and shout, “Good luck, kid!” What about this - before your child gets a driver’s license, do you just hand over the keys, and go, “Here you go – figure it out!” No. You don’t. You provide swimming lessons. You teach them how to drive. So why get a kid a phone or a tablet and just hand it over, and let them figure it all out by themselves?
What lurks online is JUST AS DANGEROUS (if not worse) than the deep end of the pool, or being behind a wheel.
Here’s some texting apps kids are downloading, that predators know about and are using to reach out to your child:
- Whats App
- Nextplus (used to be Textplus)
DATING & ANONYMOUS APPS:
Yes, there are dating apps FOR CHILDREN out there, and apps that cater to those who wish to remain anonymous.
- Omgle – seriously, their ad says “talk to strangers!” and they assure you that they pick someone at random for you to talk to, and that you can remain anonymous.
- Yubo (used to be Yolo)
- Yik Yak
And the number one BULLYING APP is Sarahah. Seriously, an app FOR bullying. Not to report bullying, but to actually bully others.
LIVE STREAMING APPS:
These apps allow people right into your home – watching your kid via the mobile cam.
- PHOTO & VIDEO STREAMING APPS:
And last but not least,
Roblox, an innocent game, but unfortunately, the 8-year-old kid chatting with your son through this game is probably a 58-year-old unemployed guy named Horace who hasn’t showered in three days.
There’s absolutely no reason for your child to be on ANY of these apps.
As adults, we are the first line of defense between a child, and a stranger online. Every day someone is coming up with a new way to communicate online, so clearly, the only way to prevent your child from becoming a victim, is to be involved. Check the phone. Check the tablet. Don’t let your child have his or her own AppleID or iTunes account. Lock. It. DOWN!
Make sure you always have the password to all of their devices. If they complain they feel like a prisoner in their own home, let them know that’s a better scenario than being a prisoner in a stranger’s “secret room.”
We truly do care about your kids, and we know you do too.